16 January 2017

How Is That Possible?

They say the "unexamined life is not worth living". I say the "unexamined family tree is not worth publishing"!

Check Your Facts

Occasionally you need to analyze your family tree to see if anything looks illogical. Your family tree software may alert you if you’ve entered facts that are impossible, such as a woman giving birth when she’s a little girl or after she’s dead. But it won't alert you if your facts show a person living in two different states at the same time.

Don't leave impossible facts in your family tree.

A common name in my family, but 2 with the same birth date?
A common name in my family,
but 2 with the same birth date?
Recently I was adding census data to my family tree. One set of facts said the wife came to America two years before her daughter.

If this were true, it would mean she left her infant daughter in Italy, came to join her husband in America, and didn’t send for her baby for another two years.

That's highly unlikely and can only be proved or disproved by finding the mother and daughter’s immigration records.

These types of logic errors are what I frequently find in other people’s family trees—a big reason why I never accept someone else's research without seeing the documentation. Many times, these errors are difficult to spot and difficult to solve.

I like to put a bookmark on people with a logic error so I can quickly see where more investigation is needed.

See what type of reporting features your software may have. Whatever tools you can use, your tree will benefit from a logic scrubbing.

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